Maha govt offers bridge course to AYUSH practitioners and nurses
- The state government has selected 5,716 AYUSH practitioners and nurses for a bridge course.
- These people will undergo a six to eight months training at government hospitals, Trust hospitals and private medical colleges accredited by Maharashtra University of Health Science (MUHS)
- The state government is currently in the process of converting 5,200 sub-centres into health and wellness centres.
The entrance exam for this bridge course was conducted on July 21, 2019. And these AYUSH practitioners and nurses will soon be appointed as community healthcare officers.
The IMA is blatantly opposed to community healthcare workers and is at loggerheads with the union government over this issue. It had raised strong objections during the passage of the NMC Bill in the Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha.
On one hand, the IMA is opposed to appointing AYUSH practitioners as community health officers. It had even protested on this issue and it was a focal flashpoint between the government and doctors.
The Maharashtra government has already gone forward with training AYUSH practitioners and nurses with a bridge course so that they can be later appointed as CHO's in sub-centres in the state.
My Medical Mantra spoke to a few key people who are associated with these on-going events. They stated the reason behind this move and how it aims to address the shortage of doctors in the state.
Dr Kalidas Chavan, Register, Maharashtra University of Health Sciences, said, 'There is an acute crunch of healthcare professionals working in the Health and Wellness Centres. So, we have selected Ayush practitioners and nursing graduates to work as community health officers (CHO) in Maharashtra. We have started a six months course to train them. After completing the course they will be trained in government and private medical colleges.'
This move is pivotal as the state is in the process of converting sub-centres into health and wellness centres.
While speaking about this development, Dr Anup Kumar Singh, Commissioner Health, Maharashtra, informed, 'Maharashtra is converting 5200 sub-centres into Health and Wellness Centres. So, we have requested the National Health Mission to increase the capacity of study centres with more than 300 beds from the exiting 60 to 120 candidates per batch. The state would ensure that the community health officers will be imparted training as per the guidelines of the government of India.'
As the government is in process of recruiting community health care officers, IMA has remained adamant on its stand and has continued with their protest on this subject.
Dr Suhas Pingle, Secretary, Indian Medical Association, Maharashtra, expressed his opinion, saying, 'The government is contemplating to induct AYUSH doctors as community health officers after completing a six months bridge course. In the past, the Indian Medical Association had launched a strong protest against this move. In National Medical Commission Bill (NMC) the government has mentioned community health workers, and now they are appointing BHMS, Unani doctors as community health officers. This in future will bring the health of the citizens under threat.'
The Commissioner Health Services and Mission Director, National Health Mission (Maharashtra) had written to the Ministry of Health in New Delhi regarding this move.